The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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CellOne in place after hiccups

The CellOne service of Calcutta Telephones was finally commissioned on Friday. Nearly 24,000 customers are availing of the facility, which the BSNL authorities could implement after several hiccups.

“CellOne was launched at 4 am today. There has been no complaint till now,” said R.K. Mishra, Calcutta Telephones general manager (customer services), on Friday. “For new customers, the service will be available after November 10. The date of registration will be announced later,” Mishra added.

BSNL officials were monitoring operations all day. “We have been sending short messages to the customers, asking them whether they were satisfied with the services,” Mishra said. Many users expressed their satisfaction. “CellOne services are better than the earlier one. The speed has increased and the sound is clear,” said P. Mondal, a user.

“The switchover is good, it is working well as of today and the calls are clearer,” said T. S. Srinivasan, secretary, Telephone Services Society. “However, to improve connectivity even more, the base terminal stations need to be increased,” he added. He claimed some customers were facing problems in sending and receiving SMS.

“We have asked other operators to open the new route so that there is no problem with SMS,” Mishra said. “We have cross-checked with all companies and it is working perfectly,” he added.

CellOne services faced several speedbreakers en route to implementation. The debut date was deferred several times. Officials said the annual target was a lakh connections. “By March 2004, we want to achieve the target,” a CalTel official said.

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